Monday, March 28, 2011

Champagne Brunch at Ardeo+Bardeo, Sunday March 27, 2011

I know, I've been majorly slacking on updating the blog.

I still have to write up my wonderful experience at Kaito Sushi in San Diego with Chefs Kaz and Jo, and I didn't write anything here about the bacon flights at Eola a couple weeks ago.  I know.

But now I'm going to write about my champagne brunch yesterday at Ardeo+Bardeo in Cleveland Park.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Quick Bites: Tractor Room

For brunch this morning, we walked over to a place called Tractor Room in Hillcrest.  We were fortunate enough to get seated almost immediately, because it was packed!

I feel I need to mention, if you're thinking of going here, that the portions are HUGE.  I mean, like really really big.  I'm not joking, here.

Jackalope on the wall -- love it!

Here's the rundown:

-No No Pimm Pimm's (Pimm's cup with mint, cucumber, and something else I forget) was really tasty and refreshing
-Wild Boar Hash was delicious -- the pancetta really elevated the taste to a higher plane.  I didn't feel the eggs necessarily added much, but man, this was really really good
-Cornbread side was tasty, though perhaps a bit sweet for how I like my cornbread
-Fruit was so good!  Damn you, California, and your good fruit year-round!

I have breakfast for at least tomorrow and potentially Tuesday as well, out of the leftovers from the hash.  Seriously.

Quick Bites: Craft & Commerce

So, I'm in San Diego.

Last night for dinner, we were hoping to go to Stone Brewery, but were told there was a 2 hour wait.  We were already hungry, so headed to Craft & Commerce, in Little Italy.

Here's the rundown:

-Eastern Prospector (orance-spice-tea-infused bourbon, lemon, honey) was reeeally tasty
-Devils on Horseback (bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese, bacon-wrapped asparagus, and bacon-wrapped apple+cheese slices) were deeelicious
-Mini corn dogs supposedly had bacon in them but were merely okay
-Mac and cheese had mushrooms and truffle oil, but wasn't great.  Merely okay
-Farmer's plate (veggies over quinoa) was good
-Fresh pickles were waaaaay too salty

It was super crowded, and pretty loud, so not an ideal atmosphere for catching up with friends.  The cocktails were better than the food.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Number 68 Project and animal abuse

It just so happened that I found out about a bunch of awesome-sounding, high-end food events at the same time: Number 68 Project, Sensorium, and Cochon 555. I'm not going to go into a comparison; I'm going to talk about why I'm not going to Number 68 Project. It's a bit of a story, but I'm going to lay all the details out for you here, so please bear with me.

When I heard of Number 68 Project, I looked at their website and was slightly taken aback by the manufactured exclusivity of it -- you can't just buy tickets to a particular night, you have to "request an invitation" by answering questions like "What is your idea of earthly happiness?" Okay, fine, they don't want just anybody, they want it to be a little more controlled. Seems a bit pretentious to me, but that's their prerogative. I looked at the chef lineup, and it seemed like maybe it would be a fun event, sort of like a salón with awesome food. I could dig it. I also noticed that Ellen Gray was listed as an advisor -- Ellen is the manager of Equinox, as well as being a noted animal rights activist.

I "requested" an invitation Friday, and hadn't yet checked my email Saturday when I saw a tweet by Number 68 Project. The tweet said:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Birch and Barley Boozy Brunch, Sunday, February 6, 2011

As soon as I saw the article in Bacon Today about the toffee bacon donut at Birch and Barley, I knew that I had to have it, and soon.  It's only served during Sunday brunch, so I made reservations immediately, and had an easy time convincing three friends to come with me.  

The toffee bacon donut comes as part of an order of three donuts (though apparently it is really two donuts and one donut hole) -- toffee bacon, lemon poppyseed, and chocolate ($6).  They are made to order, and come out looking beautiful, as you can see.

Lemon Poppyseed donut, Toffee Bacon donut, Chocolate donut hole

Sunday, February 6, 2011

PORC, Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I'm not sure if it's been made clear to you yet, but I love meat.  I was very excited when I learned that there was going to be a new food truck and that it would focus on BBQ.  I was on H St. NE for the Saturday Jan 29th opening of the PORC truck -- Purveyors Of Rolling Cuisine.

PORCmobile's menu

Unfortunately for my pork craving, I'd just eaten at Smith Commons for restaurant week, and was unable to sample the porky goodness that night, but I did get to take a couple pictures and say hello.  I knew that Meat Week was happening, and I planned to get my fill of pork on Wednesday night at Torrie's@Wilsons for the PORC Meat Week event.

The eagerly-awaited Wednesday night arrived, and I brought my appetite to Torries.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Smith Commons for Restaurant Week, Saturday, January 29, 2011

I'm not sure why I decided to make two RW reservations in a row without a day of rest, but hot on the heels of my Friday night meal at Kushi, I found myself at Smith Commons on Saturday night.  I'd already been to Smith Commons twice for drinks, but they are not serving food at the upstairs bars yet, so I had not yet sampled the cuisine.

The gorgeous and huge picture window on the second floor, which overlooks H St.

The reservation was for 7:30 for 4; despite being on time, we were not seated til 8:15.  I'm not sure how this goes, exactly -- whether there are just some patrons who linger and there's nothing to be done, or whether it's indicative of poor planning.  They were friendly about it, and said they would come get us upstairs when the table was ready.  Unfortunately, I was starving when I got there, so I continued to starve while we waited.

After sitting down at our table (and being thanked for our patience), we finally got to order.  I had already perused the RW menu in the same way I did the Kushi RW menu, and determined that at Smith Commons, the RW deal is probably akin to getting the dessert and one drink free (depending on what you order).  I have been eating a lot of chicken lately, so I went all beef: beef carpaccio, beef burger, and if there had been a beef dessert I probably would have ordered that too.  As it was, I decided on the lava cake.